The best brass instrument repair person for your job may depend on the type of job you need done. A professional musician repairing a rare horn would seek different qualities than a soccer mom looking to quickly fix a folded-over trombone. Overall, the best way to find a good provider of brass instrument repair is to ask a professional brass musician who repairs her horns. Sometimes, you may end up getting a lucky tip that leads you to a low-cost, high-quality instrument repair technician.
Researching online ratings for a brass instrument repair specialist can be helpful, but the ratings can be misleading. Different brass players expect different things out of a brass instrument repair person. Some raters are happy with the best price and fast service, while others are looking for high-quality workmanship to ensure an expensive instrument is well cared for. When dealing with an expensive instrument, it may be a good idea to ask a repairman for references or work samples before handing over a delicate instrument.
A major part of what gives a horn its sound is the shape of its bore, which is the tubing between the mouthpiece joint and the bell of an instrument. In a professional brass instrument, these bores are delicately shaped to achieve a certain sound, and a slight change in the shape of the instrument can cause the sound of the instrument to change. When an instrumentalist relies on the timbre of his brass instrument for part of his profession, he wants the instrument returned to its optimum state with as much skill as possible.
While general instrument repairmen can make a dented horn functional again, the delicacy with which basic brass instrument repair professionals work may not be suitable for repairing a high-end instrument. Likewise, hiring a highly skilled brass instrument repair technician who repairs high-end professional brass instruments to return a cheap student horn to like-new condition is probably unnecessary. When repairing an inexpensive student horn, the best brass instrument repair shop may be the one that gets the job done reliably and inexpensively. Repairing a professional horn may require a visit to a brass specialist who works only on specific types of brass instrument, which can cost more.
Sometimes, you just need a quick dent knocked out of a brass instrument you rented or borrowed. Generally, a good contact for the most affordable brass instrument repair service in town is the local high school or college band director or instrument equipment supervisor. These instructors work with many students and instruments, so they most likely know who will do the work inexpensively.